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in the current discussions about how to curb the federal deficits and avoid having us fling ourselves over the so-called fiscal cliff in a couple of weeks. we are trying to sort out the pluses and minuses of this proposal, which we find is more complicated than one might imagine, and it's complicated further by the shifting landscape of medicare policy, federal health policy, in light of the affordable care act, and the state of health care system generally. hence, today's program, and we're going to take a close look at some of the pros and cons with the help of some of the country's leading medicare and retirement policy analysts. we are pleased to have as a partner in today's program, a kaiser family foundation, leader in health policy analysis and health journalism and communication. we're especially happy to have as a co-moderator today, tricia neuman, whose the senior vice president of the foundation and a director of its program on medicare policy. and i have a quick note for you. if you are watching live on c-span, or for that matter watching the webcast, which will be available beginning
code, shrink the deficit, protect the taxpayers and grow the economy. but democrats consistently rejected those offers. the president chose instead to spend his time on the campaign trail. reelected. and congressional democrats sat on theirel hands. now republicans have bent over backwards. we stepped way, way out of our comfort zone. we wanted an agreement. w but we had no takers. but the phone never rang, and so now here we are five days from the new year, and we might finally start talking. democrats have had an entire year to put forward a balance withed, bipartisan proposal, and if they had something to fit the bilker i'm sure the majority maj leader would have been able toe deliver the votes the president would haveld needed to pass it here in the senate. and we wouldn't beth in this met but here we are, once again, at the end of the year staring at a crisis we shouldri have dealt wt literally months ago. make no mistake, the only reason democrats have been trying to deflect attention onto me and me colleagues over the past fewt weeks is that they don't have plan of their o
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